LAST night wasn’t good, was it?
Why couldn’t anyone in a red shirt pass to anyone else in a red shirt? I know Napoli’s pitch looked like it had been dug up, but still. We should have managed at least one shot on target. It’s really hard to score without them.
It rounds off a rather disappointing week or so for Liverpool. Out of the Carabao Cup, beaten in the Champions League and losing their 100 per cent record in the Premier League — albeit in a game where we rescued a decent point.
Even in a frustrating run, some players have come out with credit. Daniel Sturridge has scored twice, Alisson Becker has proved he can make big saves at big times and Joe Gomez continues to grow every game.
For others, form is starting to become a concern. It has been a particularly worrying eight days if you are Jordan Henderson.
That’s not to say Henderson is to blame specifically for any of the last three results. Blaming any one player in a team game is daft, unless it is a goalkeeper throwing the ball in the goal. (Hiya Loris, mate. Glad you are enjoying Turkey. Never come back, please.) But the facts aren’t great at all.
Not including stoppage time, Henderson has spent 179 minutes on the pitch in the last three games. In that time, Liverpool have scored zero goals and conceded four. In the same games Henderson has spent 91 minutes on the bench, and Liverpool have scored two goals and conceded zero.
Subscribe to our YouTube channel where we preview, immediately react to and analyse every Liverpool game…
Again, saying Liverpool’s fortunes or otherwise are down to one player is daft. In two of those games Henderson isn’t in the first 11 and Liverpool start dreadfully. He also can’t do anything about Sturridge hitting the bar with one shot, and scoring with another.
However, if you’re the captain of a football team, the above should worry you. As a leader he should be a positive influence on the team, yet the opposite seems to be true. Given the fact that he also doesn’t start Liverpool’s biggest win of the Premier League so far (4-0 against West Ham) or their most eye catching (2-1 at Spurs), you would worry a pattern was emerging.
Is it Jordan himself or the balance of the midfield with him in it? Naby Keita hasn’t set the world alight yet, but he does offer something different, and crucially James Milner and Gini Wjinaldum seem much more sure of themselves and their roles in that three.
With Henderson in for Keita, regardless of their respective abilities, it all looks a bit samey and a little bit too safe. Wjinaldum and Henderson managed just 12 forward passes between them last night. No wonder the front three looked frustrated. They haven’t been in great form either, but you could imagine they would really benefit from someone passing the ball forward.
Crucially, the manager’s faith in Henderson seems to be wavering a bit too. While Gini and Milner have been largely ever present, it is Henderson who has been in and out. He had a much busier summer so that might be a factor, but at crucial times this season, like 1-0 down at Chelsea, there have been on-pitch lieutenants Jürgen Klopp seems to trust more.
I’m not writing Henderson off by any means. He’s got shares in The Anfield Wrap after all. But with Keita potentially unavailable and Fabinho seemingly way off the pace, we could really do with Henderson imposing himself on games sooner rather than later. In fact, definitely sooner, Jordan, to be honest.
Manchester City on Sunday. They’ve got about seven lads who play number 10, and we are really going to need him at his best.
For more reaction to the Napoli defeat, SUBSCRIBE to TAW Player…
“Liverpool got exactly what they deserved!” 😩
Subscribe to listen to our Post Match Show: https://t.co/UlqKvwZIWy pic.twitter.com/qCOG06FIdn
— The Anfield Wrap (@TheAnfieldWrap) 3 October 2018
Pics: David Rawcliffe-Propaganda Photo
Like The Anfield Wrap on Facebook
Another Henderson bashing. I’m more worried about Mo. It’s not just one facet of his game that’s off. He holds the ball, can’t decide whether to shoot or pass, when he passes it’s too late and frequently badly aimed/weighted, and when he shoots it’s not on target or struck poorly. Sure he still works his tail off, but who on this team doesn’t? I hope he gets it together soon because the majority of the balls forward go to him and he’s squandering many chances.
Let me clarify that I wasn’t implying that TAW regularly bashes Hendo. He just receives an extraordinary amount of negative bias in general. Undeserving in my opinion, but I realize that this is a very polarizing issue a la Brexit/remain, Trump/Sanity, Red/Blue. TAW using stats to plant seeds of doubt about the effectiveness of Hendo is no different than my little rant about Mo. Probably neither one is what the club needs right now, but it’s football and it happens and it sells subscriptions. (Happy subscriber already)
Another?? These lads have slobbered all over him for the past 18 months despite him being consistently crap in that time.
Fully agree. It feels like you’re only allowed to criticise hendo if he plays 10 bad games in a row!!! Poor player – no trophy with him a regular
I normally defend Henderson, as there is a player in there. However he has no place to hide of late. He’s been distinctly shite this season and it truly does need saying. However he isn’t the only one, there’s several others that need a damn good kick up the arse, so lets do it as a collective and ensure Henderson is equally deserving of this.
Wednesday night I could have sworn Henderson morphed into probably the worst midfielder we have had to endure since Rafa left; Christian fecking Poulsen. Now that is the greatest insult I can afford any player if they are being listed as being similar to the human glacier. Enough is e-fucking-nough! Time for Hendo to raise his game to stupendous levels against City on Sunday.
Ive watched liverpool for the best part of 60yrs ive seen the good the amazing,to the bad the worse and the appaling but Wednesday was more a nightmare there were 2 players on the pitch that wore the captains armband both were missing.No leadership no heart no guts on the whole klopp also contributed to the night to late with his subs again. Im glad i didnt go to the game if i had i would have asked for my money and expenses back
Fair comment on Hendo but the cheap shot at Karius was uncalled for. He is still a Liverpool player and deserves at least some respect for that alone.
Whilst I agree he deserve some respect, I also hope he doesn’t return as I think he poor. Nothing he did was ever convincing and we have had some dogshite goalies down the years and he’s in amongst the list unfortunately. However I wish him well for his future.
One bad game and we need a scapegoat.
Henderson was not the worst last night and Nabi hasn’t been great so far.
During that 179 minutes there were 10 others with the same stats so why hang them on Hendo?
2 weeks ago he put in a great performance against PSG.
Don’t forget, at the end of last season this midfield trio were nothing short of brilliant so let’s cut them some slack until it’s really warranted.
We should be showing more support for Henderson who has shown his loyalty to the club by signing again without hesitation where others have held the club to ransom.
Anyway- up the Reds and let’s get into these mancs on Sunday.
SPOT ON POST
Agree a Keita, as apart from a couple of things, such as that run at the WHU defence who were garbage against us and that through ball against Palace to Salah… I can’t remember anything worthwhile he done and on Wednesday night it just seemed like he didn’t like the pitch, the weather and his scratchy kit (should wash it in Persil).
Not sure the article is about Scapegoats, but it is a worrying trend that our best performances this season have not included Hendo and when we have been shite, he’s tended to be in the midst of it all. But you call it right, he’s not the worst as there’s a few who need a damn good kick in the arse and to start to get their finger out and turn up. Wednesday night was beyond woeful and not acceptable. However not being able to say this and just pat people on the back and say that everything is rosy and fantastic isn’t the answer either. Things need saying and this one needed to be said.
@J Did you ever stop to think how tired the team might be when they faced Napoli at home?
They looked tired, and devoid of ideas. Klopp has options and if the impression he gave of setting up for a draw, then why not play and test other players on the roster?
Not wholesale changes, but at least start some of the players who need to cut their teeth on games like this.
Would we have lost, yeah, maybe, or maybe not since I am willing to bet they were just more hungry to prove a point.
I just hope the team is not tired against City this weekend.
Not sure what game you watched Sash, but tiredness wasn’t the issue… being shite was. Most on Wednesday night couldn’t trap a bag of wet cement. Most did not seem up for the challenge that can at them. That was psychological. And trust me, tiredness is also a state of mind.
What was witnessed on Wednesday was a real shocker of a performance. They suddenly found a team happy to go at us and not wilt and what we collectively saw was most decided this wasn’t for them.
Anyways, you already have made comments were you don’t rate our second string and have written them off… You also seem to have a permanent downer on Klopp. So let’s sack him and get Woy back then, as I think then you may be happy. I’d rather not. I’d rather we got a grip of players who have yet to turn up and suddenly get them to find some desire and fire in their bellies, as that was what was lacking on Wednesday, that and in-game intelligence… an in game intelligence where our forwards need to make the ball stick to them when under the cosh and to buy cheap FK’s and our MF to put themselves about and compete.
WHY when 2/3rds of the team play SHITE does Henderson get the brunt?? Keita before his injury was all over the place,Wijnaldum poor and dare i say Milly under par too THEN THERE WAS THE FRONT THREE and TAA poor, NOT 1 MENTION just Hendo`s fault SHITE POST AGAIN !!
Henderson was the second worst player on the pitch. Only Milner was worst. That follows from Henderson being abysmal against Chelsea.
I’ll happily write an article for TAW saying how shit a fair few of them have been of late and we have been scraping by (don’t think TAW would allow me to though, especially as I am not one of them)
Unfortunately Hendo has been part of the scraping by and it’s not just Wednesday nights performance.
I generally defend Henderson, but there’s no hiding how woeful he was on Wednesday regardless of what anyone says and it wasn’t just Wednesday night… But like you say, he’s in good company at present for the being SHITE award. The things is now to say it as it is and this lot need to pull their fucking fingers out, as Wednesday night looked more like a team who just shat their pants and just didn’t quite fancy any of it.
Good Lord! Another article on Henderson.
Over 20 articles on TAW alone (yeah I just searched Hendo’s name), in less than two seasons, about a captain and midfielder that is very limited in his abilities. Poor guy, I feel sorry for Hendo.
Makes me wonder how many articles were written about Brian Hall, Ray Kennedy, Jan Molby and of those who accomplished great stuff with LFC, while missives about a limited player continue to pour in?
This almost seems like one of those contemporary art projects in museums where a lot of BS is written or said, without actually saying anything when you look at the actual work of art, to give it “meaning”, “importance”, “context” or “qualify” it as a work of art.
Maybe some day, in the not too distant future, TAW’s writing will have us all believe Henderson is really Gerard in disguise.
Next up Karius, on why his absence is wreaking havoc on Salah and Mane’s ability to score.
Great fun, keep it coming!
Because he’s won bugger all since he became captain. Instead of making stuff happen when we lose he passes sideways or backwards. When was the last time he made a game defining moment. His debut perhaps.
Tonnes of articles back in the day on a variety of media sources. same as there have been for all our midfielders that include Joe Cole, Christian Poulsen, Paul Stewart, Mike Marsh and even Shaqiri’s mate over at Stoke.
likewise there’s been articles about Milner, Gini and no doubt in the future more about Keita and the invisible man…
Perhaps you prefer it sash for no article to be written???
@J Never said I preferred this or that. My comments were sarcastic to say the least. However it never comes off well in type.
My point is it’s old news about a limited player, who’s a good cog in the wheel for most teams in the PL.
IMO, all these articles do these days is give ammo for supporters and divide opinion and support. Not excusing Henderson, and I am certainly guilty of taking out my frustrations on him.
But I do wonder, while everyone’s entitled to their opinion, what does it mean to support a club or player?
I’m sure you or I would love to have a David Silva or Willian but Klopp prefers players like Hendo otherwise he wouldn’t have given him another 5 years.
So how do we improve our perspective on Henderson who has a very big duty to the club and no doubt the weight of being in the shadow of players like Gerard?
Hi Sash, everyone is entitled to discuss their opinions, which I felt the author of the piece did so very well in a constructive article.
I actually like Henderson and as someone else put it on the comments, give him enough games and he will find his form again. Trouble is that with misfiring forwards not taking the chances, we just have not been able to ease in him or even the invisible man into games, safe in the knowledge that we have it all sewn up.
Hendo will come good again this season, but for now he’s been part of the problems of late.
As for the 2 players you listed, both were heavily linked with the Club and we failed to pay the price that would entice them to us. So they are not with us, Gerrard is gone and WE have to find a solution and that does not always mean going out and buying. Hendo has enough in his locker to be a part of our future, a fantastic future, but for me he is not a 6 (the anchor role) and equally him, Gini and Milner are not always a great combo in games. Sometimes, like Wednesday night we should have changed formation and gone 4 2 3 1 or even a 4 4 2 diamond, however both combos would have meant sacrificing one of this MF trio. Once Keita decided he doesn’t like wet and cold nights, shite pitches or possibly playing for us (which looking at Wednesday night this seemed to be the case), then we should have been bold and put Shaqiri on and changed shape.
Just my thoughts, but they count for nothing. Where as those of Klopp (who IS a World Class Elite manager) and the players count for everything. Likewise we all like to read and share each other’s thoughts as we are passionate about the game and particularly our team and we can’t get enough of like minded individuals wishing to discuss it all.
I hope we continue to get more of these articles, about Hendo and others.
Great article. Facts are that Henderson is very limited and is not good enough for us to win trophies. Yes he has good games v poor opposition but when we face quality, more often than not he’s a passenger. Nothing against him, but if he was that great a player why would liverpool have spent 150m on the midfield recently?
I get frustrated with Hendo sometimes too much side to side and back passing. I wonder if he is asked to play this type of link up play by Klopp. When he came on he made a difference just in energy Keita gave the ball away far to often. I think in summary no one really played well and picking on Hendo seems too easy. The team lost (in extra time). Midfield has been a real strength Millie as some and gini a revelation. Let’s give it time. Klopp also needs to learn to change things quicker. In summary a bad night for all involved. Let’s get back to what is normal service and smash city. YNWA.
Ok.. nobody seems to actually know if Henderson is any good as some seem to think he’s great and others terrible. In other news… what happened to keita? News suggests he isn’t actually injured. If not then what? Perhaps it’s his head. Imagine the stress on a young lad joining a huge club and all that goes with it. No doubt these guys are looked after physically and mentally but who knows what such hi expectations can do to a lad. In any case, hope he kicks on soon because there are moments when he has shown great ability.
Henderson is one of those players who plays himself into form over a period of time. The current arrangement where he is rotated with other able players doesn’t allow him to hone his abilities and that in turn makes him risk averse. Give him a decent run of games and he’ll be dropping a long ball on a fifty pence piece again. Unfortunately, for Henderson, with the standard of midfielders that has been brought in there is going to be a constant rotation of players but it is down to Klopp, who obviously values his captain, to bring the best out of him.
It’s difficult isn’t it SJB, as we are in a run of games where we do not have the luxury of allowing this. However Hendo can play, as he has proven. unfortunately though we are now dining at the top table and he needs to be at the top of his game to enjoy doing this with us. To date he hasn’t been and this needs to alter and soon as we need the player he can be… and for that matter the same for a few others including Mo, Mane and even Naby (who we all have high hopes for).
Really like your opinions generally John, but this feels a little like what the lazy media are saying about Henderson.
Our midfield was crap against Napoli, but I honestly thought Henderson was the best of a bad lot. And didn’t think it was his performance necessarily that got him hooked vs Chelsea – more that we needed another attacker as time was getting shorter to get an equaliser.
He lost his head a little as Hazard made him look stupid a couple of times in the cup game, but he did that to Jordan last season too, so not too worried.
A more worrying trend for Henderson is being distinctly average and on Wednesday night being utter shite. This now has to stop and he (like many others around him) has to raise his game.
Henderson seems to be a throw back to the ‘good old days’ (circa 1966) when you used to lump the ball a mile ahead and hope for the best. When playing Spaniards, Croatians, Italians, and Pep on Sunday, it’s all about possession. That is not his game. If you can’t live without him, turn him into Mascherano 2.0, but with Virgil, Gomez and Robo, is that really a need? Is Lallana still hurting? Not only is he a great hunter, he can keep the ball under duress. Henderson cannot. Leadership is about more than barking; it is about setting an example. What I cannot understand is why England don’t realize their Captain is indeed wearing a Red shirt most days, but it has the number 7 on it.
Because he IS shit, glad you finally noticed something. Wit hi on the pitch even Van Dijk becomes unsure. He completely distrupts the flow of our play. The lad manages to put teammates under pressure out of nowhere and the other teams have found out that he pops if you slightly press him. No leader at all and a very average player.
He is not shit Reek, he is a very good player, one who has captained his country and went on the longest unbeaten streak of any player capped by England. He was also part of a Liverpool team that went to the CL Finals last term and also part of an England team that went to the World Cup semis. He also was the sum of our parts we missed the most after his sending off in the season under Rodgers were we nearly won the PL.
So he’s not a shit player, just a player who is currently having shit form. It happens. He also wasn’t the shittest out there on Wednesday night. However I don’t think he’s the answer as a 6 and we should have left Gini in the role.
Fucking unbelievable how so many world class armchair midefielders on here shit themselves at a defeat. It’s part of football. Get up and fight for the next match, at home v possibly best team in Europe, to continue our best start to a season in 28 plus years. Henderson was pivotal in us getting to Kiev. Get behind him cos he’s all we have right now unless you are playing Fantasy Football.
Hendo needs criticism… he’s been elevated above status for doing very little. Sideways, backwards.. Time for him to deliver or be benched. Goes missing in important matches… Croatia, real, Man U. Chelsea,
Hope your toxic negative idea of being a supporter is nowhere near Anfield tomorrow. Klopp needs that like the country needs Boris Johnson.
Good post Paul… I agree with what you have stated. However it does need stating that Hendo we know has failed to turn up this season, but he is in great company at present.
Hopefully today we will go out and give it a damn good go, even if we lose and give it everything, then we can accept that. Wednesday night was one of those that most in our team (particularly Keita) decided it was cold, wet, miserable pitch and they would sooner be at home watching CL footy from the comforts of their homes than participating in one were the oppo was up for the game.